Clarinet – Opinions, Analysis and Buying Guide in 2022
The clarinet has been a key piece in orchestras and many classical composers made it the protagonist of very beautiful melodies due to its attractive sound. If you are looking for a project to get a clarinet, it is well worth investing your money in one that meets your expectations. For example, you could use the Tuyama TBK-178, which is made of ebonite, a resistant material that offers properties similar to ebony. In addition, this bass clarinet is in B flat and can be tuned up to 442 Hz. Another recommended model is the Buffet BC2501-2-0, it has been manufactured under strict quality standards, with a classic and robust design, it also includes basic accessories and a case..
Opinions on the best clarinets on the market
If the sound of the clarinet has caught your attention and you are looking to become a player of this interesting instrument, you are probably analyzing purchase options. Below we provide you with a small list made up of some models that stand out in the market due to their characteristics.
Tuyama TBK-178 Bass Clarinet Boehm System Low to C
Its design is elegant in black, thanks to its ebonite material, which at the same time provides durability to the instrument and good sound. It also has high-quality silver keys, so you can play the notes without complications.
It is a bass clarinet capable of reaching a low C, due to its shape and size. This means that you can play different styles of music with it, giving groups a warmer wind accompaniment.
Likewise, we inform you that you can tune it up to the frequency of A in 442 Hz, which is widely used in various styles of music and bands.
On the other hand, it should be noted that the package includes a resistant case with soft material inside, to avoid scratches while you move it from one place to another.
These are the pros and cons of the Tuyama TBK-178 Bass Clarinet, so read each quality carefully if you want to make a proper purchase.
Materials: This instrument is made of hard rubber, a material that adapts easily to climate changes.
Tuning: It is tuned in B flat, so you will not have to transpose the scores that are in that key signature. This is very useful in orchestral arrangements, for example.
Accessories: Among its accessories are the mouthpiece and the hard case, so you can protect the instrument while you move it.
Reed: The reed that comes with the instrument may not offer the best sound, so you should purchase a better one separately.
Another good bass clarinet option is this one presented to us by the Odyssey brand, which stands out among other qualities for having a B-flat tuning and the improvements of the Boehm key system, which provide comfort and a more balanced sound. In addition, it includes 2 barrels in its set, one slightly thinner than the other, this allows it to better adapt to the player and allow a comfortable and simple performance with a pleasant sound.
On the other hand, it has been made of ABS, so its tuning is not altered as frequently by temperature conditions, as occurs with wooden clarinets, but it also provides easy maintenance, so it can be recommended. for beginners, who are just beginning their learning and are looking for a robust instrument that combines a good sound, that’s why we consider it one of the best clarinets of 2022.
Now let’s take a closer look at the most notable features of the model, as well as what could be a drawback in its design. With this you will have more elements to choose which clarinet to buy.
Material: Because it is made of ABS, its maintenance is simple, but it is also considered resistant.
Case: The model has a hard case with ABS cover, which can be strong enough to protect the clarinet.
Tuning: Thanks to the fact that it is a clarinet tuned in B flat, you will have a large repertoire of pieces to interpret.
Barrels: The model includes 2 barrels in the set, so it can be better adapted to the needs of the player while offering comfort.
Accessories: The set does not include cleaning accessories, which can be a disadvantage.
Probably when a professional interpreter is asked about which is the best clarinet, the answer is related to the Buffet Crampon brand, since it is a company dedicated for many years to the manufacture of this type of wind instruments, which It has allowed him to improve his techniques, becoming a synonym of tradition in relation to clarinets. In addition, it has a demanding verification system for its models, which allows users to acquire a Buffet clarinet of high quality and efficiency.
Its BC2501-2 model is also characterized by its great elegance, for being made of grenadilla wood, and with a 17-key configuration. While on the other hand, it has a B-flat tuning, with a frequency of 442 Hz. But probably what stands out the most in this instrument is the definition of its sound, which without complicating the execution too much, manages to provide great clarity.
If you are of the opinion that Buffet Crampon is the best brand of clarinets, we recommend you take a look at the pros and cons of this model.
Materials: Its body made of grenadilla wood allows it to be highly resistant to use and very particular acoustic qualities.
Quality: The Buffet brand has extensive experience in the manufacture of this instrument.
Tuning: Since it is a Bb-tuned clarinet, it can be versatile.
Keys: Thanks to its high-precision nickel-plated keys, a balanced sound and good durability can be achieved.
Cost: This is not the most affordable model on the market, but its qualities could meet the expectations of professional musicians.
The Yamaha YCL-255S clarinet is another of the most interesting pieces when it comes to buying one of these instruments. This model has a total of 17 keys and 6 rings, along with a barrel of 65 millimeters in diameter. A classic approach and suitable for all kinds of performances.
The instrument features a B-flat tuning with a 4C-type mouthpiece and fluted chimneys with conical recess, thus making the piece very suitable for newcomers to this world. However, this approach does not prevent the piece from being useful for performing all kinds of performances with quality.
Its design is finished off with a bell made of high-quality ABS resin, which is attached to an improved resonance chamber. The result is a sound with greater protection and better tuning when playing the lower notes.
Enjoy a quality piece from a top-level brand like this one, whose main characteristics we summarize below.
Approach: The approach of the piece is very complete and efficient, with a high quality construction.
Tuning: The improved resonance chamber gives a better tuning to the lower notes and a better response during use.
Materials: The piece has quality materials, such as the silver pegbox or the rings of the same material.
Profile: The instrument is intended more for beginners, so it may fall short for more experienced users.
Michael CL560ES Requinto Clarinet
This is a requinto clarinet with a classic and at the same time simple design, for the study and learning of the instrument. In addition, it is used to play with groups that are beginning, be it symphony orchestras, jazz bands or regional music.
Since its size is smaller compared to other types of clarinets, musicians will be able to move it more easily to any place. Likewise, its dimensions provide a brighter sound, being useful for pieces in which the clarinet should stand out a lot.
It’s in E flat, but if you know how to transpose sheet music, you’ll be able to play any piece with this little clarinet.
And, if you care about its quality, you should know that it has silver metal keys and an ebonite body, very resistant and durable materials. Also, to facilitate its storage and transport, the package includes a practical case.
In the following lines we explain the most important aspects of this requinto clarinet, it may be the one you need.
Materials: Its materials are metal and ebonite, the first is the one with which the keys are made.
Tuning: It is in E flat, so it respects the classic design of the exquisite clarinets.
Bell: It has a traditional type bell through which the sounds of the clarinet will come out with an adequate volume.
Functionality: It is not suitable for any musical piece, because the note register is more limited than in other clarinet models.
Looking for the cheapest wooden clarinets, we have found this model, which could be of interest to you, since it is made of ebonite wood, which allows it to be a robust clarinet, resistant to moisture and with a high-gloss note register.
In addition, it does not have an excessive cost, so it could well be a model for beginners without reducing quality. It could even be recommended for children around 9 years of age and older according to the experience of some users who have acquired it.
To talk about its characteristics, we will mention that it has a length of 49 cm with an approximate weight of 1 kg. On the other hand, it is an alto clarinet that you can easily take to class, since it has a hard case that will prevent it from being damaged, while at the same time keeping everything organized. In addition, in the set there are the necessary items for you to carry out your cleaning.
Let’s take a moment to analyze in detail the best that this model has to offer and if there is anything to improve.
Tuning: Thanks to its tuning in Eb, it can be a very attractive complement clarinet in musical bands.
Materials: Its ebonite-based manufacturing, in addition to giving it an attractive texture, gives it a pleasant sound.
Quality: It has attractive finishes that make it look good and allow it to have a good sound balance in the different tones to play.
Grease: The model does not mention including cork grease, which is an essential complement, but you may find it easily.
On many occasions, a change of mouthpiece can make a notable difference in the sound obtained from a wind instrument, so if you find yourself looking for clarinet mouthpiece options, we invite you to check out this one from the Vandoren brand, which is designed especially for bass clarinet, with the standard dimensions to be compatible with different models.
Among its special qualities, we can mention that it has a special angle in the chin rest area, which could provide comfort to players with different degrees of ability, so it may be the complement you are looking for to achieve a better sound.
Among the features that this clarinet ligature has as advantages, we can say that it is robust, because it is made of resistant metal, it also has three pressure plates, which provides you with versatility in sound, and will allow you to experiment with options.
On the other hand, its design is designed to meet the needs of clarinets tuned in B flat, so you should not have compatibility problems with this type of instrument. Likewise, it must be added that users rate it positively due to its smoothness. In addition, it offers a fast and precise closure due to its unique screw.
If you have a bass clarinet and are looking for special reeds for this type of note registration, the CR6225 model can be a good alternative. Regarding strength, these reeds are rated 2.5, so they could be comfortable even for beginning students learning clarinet techniques.
On the other hand, the case has 5 reeds, so you could have a clarinet reed available for each occasion in which you consider it necessary to change it, without worrying too much about looking for another set in a short time, since they have adequate durability and they can give a nice sound.
How to choose the best clarinets
Investing your money in the right clarinet is probably a project where it is not enough to know how much each one of them is offered in the market, but it may also be important to consider other variables. Next, we invite you to read our guide to buying the best clarinet, where you could find useful elements to make your selection of options.
To begin to define what could be adapted to the needs, you need to ask yourself what is the objective that you pursue when purchasing a clarinet. For example, it is different to choose one for beginners, especially for those who have never played an instrument before.
In these cases, it is very possible that it is not very clear whether the person will later choose to become a professional or it will simply be a small hobby, to get to know the instrument and test how the experience turns out. In these cases, you can look for one that is affordable, you will surely find a cheap one, with which it will be possible to start your studies and that will provide you with a pleasant sound.
But if, on the other hand, what you are looking for is to get one that will probably accompany you for many years, since your goal is to become a committed player of this instrument, the best thing would be to get a quality one that offers you a brilliant sound, who is even able to stand out in an orchestra.
In this case, the most advisable thing would be to allocate a larger budget, in order to acquire one of the professional range. Over the years, it is very possible that you will not have to change instruments, which means comfort and greater confidence for you as a performer, since you will have greater knowledge of what you can or cannot get from the model.
Another factor that can influence the general acoustic qualities of the instrument is the material from which it is made, since it will be largely what provides the particular nuance to each model, so you should know a little about its resonance.
Among the materials that can be chosen to make clarinets for beginners are Bakelite and some resins such as ABS. These can provide durability and less damage in normal situations such as humidity, to which the instrument is frequently exposed. That is why they are easier to maintain compared to other materials. However, their sound differs from professional models.
We can also find options of wooden clarinets, but it is not just any type; generally clarinets are made of precious woods of high hardness. Among the most used are the black granadillo or ebonite, which differs from ebony as it is even denser than the latter and its carving is really difficult. It is generally an oily wood and therefore resists rotting, which makes it a very good alternative for this peculiar instrument. However, its cost is high due to the fact that this species of tree is among those classified as endangered and is slow growing, so its use is strictly controlled.
On the other hand, the keys must be made of materials that are resistant to both humidity and the acid that is normally found in our hands, which is derived from perspiration. To cover the needs, it is common that in the specifications of the clarinets we see that nickel or even some gold alloys have been used, to protect them adequately and allow them to tolerate frequent use and the passage of time.
When making a comparison of clarinets, we must not overlook choosing the tuning that is desired. If you are looking for one for which there is a large repertoire of both classical and contemporary melodies, you could opt for one in A or B flat tuning, the A-tuned clarinet being the favorite of composers such as Mozart, Beethoven, Weber, and Brahms among others. However, the family of clarinets is very broad and could cover very specific needs when performing an orchestra ensemble or satisfy the preferences of performers who are looking for something very specific, due to the sound nuances offered by each of the clarinets. versions available.
There are other accessories that could be considered basic for a clarinet, such as the case, a cloth with lead for cleaning and grease for the cork of the assemblies. You will probably be interested in knowing if any of these is included in the set, or if you will have to buy them separately, so that you do not miss anything and can start practicing.
Frequently asked questions
Q1: How to moisturize a wooden clarinet?
Keeping the wood of your clarinet hydrated will prevent it from being affected by the constant humidity to which the clarinet is exposed, which is usually the main cause of expansion in the wood and later causes cracks if it is not properly protected. To achieve this, you can have a thin rod at hand, which you will cover completely with a clean and dry cloth. Then apply a few drops of special oil designed for this function, which you can buy at your music accessory store. Take care that the rod manages to enter without exerting pressure and pass it through the interior of each piece without leaving excesses.
Q2: What is the most common clarinet?
Although the clarinet is one of the wind instruments that has one of the largest families, with lengths ranging from short to very long, or highly variable tunings, the clarinets that we could say are the most used, due to who have a wide repertoire of musical pieces designed for them, are the sopranos. We find these with tuning in A or B flat and they were widely used in the 18th and 19th centuries, so if you are looking to interpret this type of music, this would be the most suitable.
Q3: What to do with a clarinet that doesn’t sound?
The reasons why a clarinet does not sound are very variable, it can be from a problem of excess humidity, deterioration of the reed, which could be too old or damaged, but it can also be due to an air leak caused by a major damage. In any case, it is best that you analyze each piece carefully at first, making sure that the mechanisms properly seal each hole and are not misaligned. Also check that each section of the instrument fits well when assembling. If you do not detect anything strange, you should take it to a professional for evaluation.
Q4: When to tune a clarinet?
It is rare for a clarinet to miss the correct note, but should it ever happen, this can be corrected by slightly altering the length of the instrument. For example, if you perceive that your instrument is sharper than it should be, you can try to correct this situation by making your clarinet longer, for that it is best to start by separating the barrel from the upper body a little.
On the contrary, if the tuning is below the correct one, it is advisable to heat the instrument by passing our hot air slowly through the instrument. That is why a good practice is to warm up before a presentation to avoid surprises.
Q5: Where does the clarinet have the simple reed?
This fundamental piece of the clarinet is placed in the mouthpiece, the instrumentalist’s lips are in direct contact with it and when the air passes through the hole between it, it vibrates, producing the sound that is expected in the instrument. Its manufacture is meticulous, as well as the material from which it is made must be very specific.
Q6: Do synthetic clarinet reeds perform as well?
Some players consider that the durability of a synthetic can be greater than that of a natural reed, because the materials in general can better tolerate wear. However, there is a great difference of opinion regarding timbre, sonority, adaptation to the interpreter, etc. What causes that in the end each interpreter chooses the one that provides greater comfort and sound experience.
Q7: Which is better, clarinet or soprano sax?
The choice of one or another instrument will depend on the preferences of the interpreter. There are musicians like Sidney Bechet who from his childhood chose the clarinet as his first instrument, making it his favorite. However, in his adulthood he found in the soprano sax a way to interpret sounds with a different nuance, which was attractive to him. Also, it should be noted that the technique, posture and other qualities are shared in both instruments, so it may not be difficult to master both options.
Q8: How to sanitize a second-hand clarinet?
This procedure is very similar to what you would do with any clarinet after practice is over. It is just that greater emphasis must be placed on each of the pieces, since it is not known if the previous owner was just as careful in removing any traces of moisture or dirt. So you will have to allocate more time and do it conscientiously. Including moisturizing fluid, cork grease and key lubricant. In this way you will leave it ready to store or to use.
How to use a clarinet
If the peculiar sound of the clarinet captivated you and you have had the opportunity to get one, be sure to learn some basic recommendations that you should always keep in mind for its use and maintenance. In this way, you will ensure that your instrument remains in adequate condition for longer and even get the best sound out of it.
Hydrate your clarinet properly
Among the routine maintenance activities that are carried out on a clarinet, is the lubrication of the assemblies. These pieces can sometimes be difficult to join if they are not hydrated, so you must have a specific product for this function and apply it with certain frequency.
Among the care related to this lubrication, you must pay special attention not to fall into the error of applying excess grease, since the rings made of cork and that help to fix the pieces, can work well in this situation, but excess grease in them it can cause them to come off after a certain time, because it usually absorbs the fat, so we recommend that when you finish your practice, you verify this situation and clean the excess.
Place it preferably vertically
Clarinet keys are pieces that, although they are made of metal, are considered fragile, a blow can alter the precision with which they must seal the corresponding hole, which can cause an air leak that affects the sound. It is best that if you are going to leave your instrument exposed while not in use, have a special stand on hand, which is generally a base that allows it to stand upright. This takes up less space and is less likely to be damaged.
It is normal for this instrument to be exposed to moisture from the breath, so it is important that you have some absorbent paper among your basic maintenance accessories to help you remove this moisture from the pieces, especially to insert it into small holes. This practice, in addition to preventing out-of-tune sounds from being generated, helps keep your instrument in better condition.
The inner body of the clarinet can be cleaned with a dry cloth. What you must take care of is that it is made of some textile material that does not give off lint. Gently pass it through the center tube.
Avoid sudden changes in temperature
As we know, heat tends to expand objects, this can easily cause damage to a clarinet if proper care is not taken, especially if your instrument is made of wood. In these cases you should be very careful not to leave it exposed to extreme temperatures. For example, never allow it to sit for a long time in a car when it has been in the sun for some time, this can cause a baking effect inside the car which can lead to a crack in your instrument.
Similarly, if you have to expose yourself to the cold, take care of your instrument. It is best that you have a case with an insulating coating. Thus, it will be less likely to be damaged.
» Review information from previous years
Si lo que buscas es el mejor clarinete para aprender a tocar este instrumento, probablemente te interese conocer esta atractiva propuesta de la marca Windsor. Se trata de un clarinete bajo afinado en Si bemol, pero que también incluye un práctico estuche, con todo lo que podrías necesitar para montar y desmontar el instrumento y darle mantenimiento. Por ejemplo, agrega un desarmador fino para las llaves, paño de limpieza, estuche de cañas y soporte.
Por otro lado, en lo referente a su durabilidad, te agradará saber que es un modelo resistente a la humedad, puesto que está fabricado en plástico, pero su acabado exterior es similar a la madera, algo que le da un aspecto clásico y elegante. Mientras que sus llaves niqueladas toleran adecuadamente el uso sin deteriorarse demasiado.
Este puede que sea el mejor clarinete del momento que se ofrece en el mercado debido a su coste y cualidades. A continuación te proporcionamos un resumen de los más destacados rasgos que lo identifican.
Afinación: Por tratarse de un modelo con afinación en Si b podrías utilizar este instrumento para interpretar múltiples piezas musicales.
Estuche: Su estuche de tipo maleta rígida, permite almacenar debidamente el clarinete para que no se deteriore.
Complementos: Gracias a que incluye artículos de limpieza y mantenimiento, no tienes que adquirirlos por separado.
Llaves: Debido a sus llaves niqueladas, no tendrás que preocuparte porque pierdan su brillo en un corto plazo.
Estética: El instrumento cuenta con buenos acabados, además de una apariencia elegante y clásica.
Tela: Puede ser que el exterior de lona de su estuche se limpie con menos facilidad que uno liso. Pero cumple su función de proteger el instrumento.
Si te agrada el sonido de este instrumento, pero con buscas un registro de notas más agudas, entonces lo mejo